When I go to US, can I get AT&T micro-sim?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by owen-b, May 17, 2010.

  1. owen-b macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    #1
    Hi all,

    Getting my UK 3G iPad this month (hopefully, come on you day 1 pre-order!) and off to the US for a few weeks a couple of months later. I heard all the UK providers would be giving away micro-sims to those that wanted one, if you didn't order one with your iPad or wanted to change, which led me to wonder if AT&T would get themselves in gear to offer the same thing.

    So: any way of having a free AT&T iPad micro-SIM sent to my US-based friends in anticipation of me arriving with my iPad in July?
     
  2. sandyjmacdonald macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2009
    #2
    I think you have to have a US address to activate the AT&T microsim. I got one with my 3G iPad I bought in San Francisco, and couldn't get through the activation without a US billing address matched to my credit card.
     
  3. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #3
    Maybe.... I think I read on Apple's site that you can p/u UK microSIMs at any Apple store or participating data provider's store. I don't know exactly what the program is in the U.S., but you might try calling ATT. I can't imagine it would be that big of a deal since it's pre-paid, but then again pre-paid data is not widely available in the U.S. like Europe.

    Just a warning that the 1st line phone reps at Apple and ATT are not always the the sharpest knives in the drawer. It may take a series of calls to find someone who even knows what you are talking about -- seriously, be prepared for an ATT rep to tell you they do not use microSIMs or have prepaid data plans. Just say thanks and dial again.
     
  4. jmmo20 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2006
    #4
    Apple should add a "iPad micro sim international store" for those of us who travel frequently.

    Say, you can get a sim card for the ipad from any country you want, and get the needed credit and 3G service added automatically through Apple

    :)



    For example, I'm travelling to Norway next week and to Greece in July.. would love to be able to get local sim cards to use with my ipad!
     
  5. JodyK macrumors 6502a

    JodyK

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Location:
    Northern Atlanta suburbs
    #5
    Great question it is so early on that I am not sure either and am curious to know. There are sides to this carriers wanting your business when you are in their area but those wanting to charge more out of their area :). Being prepaid though I don't think a carrier can do roaming on the iPad? Am I wrong?

    If so there should def be an international sim system set up and in place.
     
  6. sandyjmacdonald macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2009
    #6
    I'm guessing that will never happen. It's the mobile networks' way of screwing you with unreasonably high roaming charges.

    I did read of one company launching a Europe-wide microsim for the iPad though. Can't remember the name. Anyone?
     
  7. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #7
    They should and not only would it be genius, it would be the "killer app." You can already buy pre-paid SIMs when you visit a country, but this would just simplify everything in a very Apple-like way. Just order the SIMs before you leave and have them ready to go when you land.

    When you land, pop in the SIM, hit the "Data Service" in the settings menu and then click the county you are in and the prepaid plans would pop up for your selection. Apple would handle all the back end payment work or route it to the carrier. Think of all the time saved. So civilized.
     
  8. TraceyS/FL macrumors 68040

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    Jan 11, 2007
    Location:
    North Central Florida
    #8
    This was my original hope for the iPad plans. That Apple would be handling it with iTunes cards and they would just pop us on the best network for our location.

    I think i sent this in via feedback already - if not, i'll have to go do it.

    Allow the iPad to be the game changer in the international travel world. Guess the telco's aren't going to buy into that. Bummer.
     
  9. Chris.Thomson macrumors member

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    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
    #9
  10. dextertangocci macrumors 68000

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    #10
  11. owen-b thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Nov 30, 2005
    #11
    I can't believe AT&T would charge for a replacement sim card, that's so cheeky. I don't understand why they would demand a US address for billing a credit card, too. It's so not in their interest to stop foreigners from grabbing a card and spending some money with AT&T while they're on their holidays to the US of A. Utterly bizarre.

    Okay so if I was desperate I could hack down a SIM from another US provider that does provide a free of charge PAYG SIM and doesn't require a US billing address? What US providers in the Florida and Alabama area could I get a decent data price from on a monthly (say) PAYG basis with a very cheap or free SIM card?

    Or will I have the same billing address problem with everyone?

    Or is it just not worth the hassle? ;)
     
  12. TraceyS/FL macrumors 68040

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    Jan 11, 2007
    Location:
    North Central Florida
    #12
    Here is the problem.....

    3g supported by the iPad = AT&T only

    Edge = tmobile

    SOOOO, see the big issue here in the states? LOL!

    Search around and see if someone has had success using a Visa/MC gift card to activate (addresses are usually anything you put in there) and if you can get a SIM somehow.

    BUT, i totally agree with you that they are not making this easy for travelers......
     
  13. xraydoc macrumors 604

    xraydoc

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    Oct 9, 2005
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    192.168.1.1
    #13
    ...because if travelers have data service, the terrorists win.
    Or it means a two-year contract with a $200 ETF didn't get signed.

    Or something.
     
  14. sandyjmacdonald macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2009
    #14
    Here's an interesting article from Gizmodo on why roaming charges are so expensive.

    http://gizmodo.com/5538578/giz-expl...r-country-costs-so-damn-much?skyline=true&s=i
     
  15. radioactive macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2006
    #15
    You can walk into an AT&T store, and they'll give you a MicroSIM free of charge.

    I was in Europe last week, chopped up a Vodafone SIM to make it micro, and threw the AT&T one in my wallet. When I took the AT&T out of the wallet, it was crushed. I walked into the AT&T store in Ann Arbor, and walked out 5 minutes later with a new MicroSIM. I had to re-activate the MicroSIM the iPad, but everything just worked.
     
  16. Battlestar macrumors 6502

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    Boston
  17. matthewHUB macrumors 6502

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    Nov 29, 2005
    #17
    So what's the consensus? It sounds as if you can get hold of a microsim from ATT without much problem. But do you need a US billing address to buy through the iPad settings?
     
  18. AlecEdworthy macrumors 6502

    AlecEdworthy

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    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Leicestershire, UK
    #18
    I believe that to be true but you should be able to get a pre-paid Mastercard gift card and use the address of a friend or hotel I think. If someone in the States can confirm this I think there'll be many visitors happy with you :)

    Alec
     
  19. owen-b thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Nov 30, 2005
    #19
    Okay so i guess looking through this thread now my questions are:

    1) how could i get hold of an AT&T microsim before i go to America, because when i get there we won't be going anywhere near an AT&T store as far as i know.

    2) how do i get hold of one of these visa gift cards?

    3) is it absolutely definitively the case that anyone could walk into an AT&T store and get one of the cards for free, because if so i might send one of my american friends to see if they can get one before we get there.
     
  20. Pring macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2003
    #20
    I know a couple of guys who are in the US for WWDC and got AT&T sims. You ask for a replacement sim from At&t store (not apple) and it costs $16.99. Sync with apple to get carrier settings. My friend then used his UK credit card but entered a US billing address and it activated.

    Your mileage may vary...
     
  21. AlecEdworthy macrumors 6502

    AlecEdworthy

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    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Leicestershire, UK
    #21
    Ouch! $16.99 is quite steep for a new SIM card (or perhaps I've been spoilt by UK operators giving them away). It means the 250Mb package comes to around £22 (subject to exchange rates) and the 2Gb package around £28.

    Alec
     
  22. TraceyS/FL macrumors 68040

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    North Central Florida
    #22
    But the real question is, how does it compare to just using data roaming? Becaeuse it could still be a bargain right????
     
  23. AlecEdworthy macrumors 6502

    AlecEdworthy

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    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Leicestershire, UK
    #23
    With O2 in the UK there is no data roaming for iPad tariff users (not sure about Orange, 3 and Vodafone). You could stick a different SIM card in (e.g. a PAYG one) and in that case it would be £6 per Mb (compared to around £0.09 per Mb via the AT&T card effectively). So yes, still a bargain but not as much as if you did not have to purchase the SIM card for around £11.

    Alec
     
  24. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #24

    1) ATT stores are on almost every street corner in every city, big and small, and the suburbs too. You'd have to be going to some far flung rural area not to be near an ATT store. A list of stores is online. Just make sure you go to a company owned store and not a franchise.

    2) You can buy a Visa GC in any drug or grocery store. Just ask where the gift cards are. They will have racks of them. DO verify it works before you leave the store, i.e., call up the 800 number on the back of the card to get your balance.
     
  25. macmedal macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 17, 2008
    Location:
    Britannia
    #25
    I bought AT&T sim put it in my UK iPad activated it by using a Visa gift card and hotel address all working fine.
     

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